Multiple people were killed and several injured Friday when gunmen opened fire in two crowded mosques during afternoon prayers in the city of Christchurch, New Zealand media reported.
The gunman at one mosque was an Australian-born citizen, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said in Sydney, describing him as “an extremist, right-wing, violent terrorist”.
It was not immediately clear how many attackers were involved, but New Zealand police said that four people — three men and a woman — were taken into custody.
Commissioner Mike Bush said there were “significant” and “multiple” fatalities. A number of IEDS (improved explosive devices) were also found and neutralised by the military.
A Palestinian man who was in one of the mosques said he saw someone being shot in the head.
“I heard three quick shots, then after about 10 seconds it started again. It must have been an automatic — no one could pull a trigger that quick,” the man, who did not wish to be named, told AFP.
“Then people started running out. Some were covered in blood,” he said, adding that he joined the fleeing crowd and managed to escape.
Local media reported at least nine people were dead.
“A serious and evolving situation is occurring in Christchurch with an active shooter,” police said in a statement.
Source : AFP